Life & Gratitude Lately

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Life lately: Reading with the pups.

Into the second month of 2015…how time flies! This year promises to be a great one. I think I say this every year, and every year seems to be even better than the last and for that I’m so grateful. I find that as I get older true happiness for me comes from being aware of all that I DO have in my life and less and less about what I don’t have.

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Life lately…walks along the beach. That’s Florida living. :)

I don’t have as much time as I use to blog. With homeschooling, and preparing for my Yoga Teacher training, along with daily life (did I mention I have taken the leap and will be enrolling in a 200 hr. teacher training…yikes!) the time to blog is few and far between. I use to stress about this. Now when I get to return to this little space it just feels that much more special.

Here are a few other things I’m GRATEFUL for:

Connecting: To my breath…yoga and meditation are part of my everyday. I’m a much better person when I can connect with my breath and create stillness on and off the mat.

Nourishing: Green juice daily and whole, real foods. The only way to eat that makes me feel lighter and nourished inside and out.

Reading: Waayyy too many books at once but here are a few in my stack…Everyday Grace by Marianne Williamson, Ascending with Both Feet on The Ground by Jeff Brown (loving this one!), The Four Desires by Rod Stryker.

Playing: Music. Always in the background. My son creates playlist on his iPad so many days we listen to his latest creation. I’ve also been listening to some old favorite artists like Tori Amos, The Sundays, Chris Isaac,  & Marvin Gaye.

Creating: A peaceful, well-lived and loved home. It will be almost a year since we moved into our St. Petersburg home. Oh how I love my new little city!

Growing: We have a community garden just a block from our home. Currently we are growing Kale, tomatoes, spinach, green beans, red lettuce, and beets. I like them all in my green juices. There is nothing like the feeling of harvesting your own fruits and veggies. Bliss.

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Life lately: Part of his Forensic Science Activities…dusting for fingerprints. ;)

We are all looking for ways to create lives which feel genuine and hold value. What feels genuine and holds value for me is feeling connected…connected to the people in my life that I love dearly, feeling connected to my heart & Soul because it is in my heart and soul where the answers to so many of my questions resides, connected to my community, and connected to all those things that help me to take good care of myself. Self-care equals LOVE for self and for those that you come into contact with.

Everyday as I move through my days I become more grateful for this awareness. As I’m typing I’m sitting across the table glancing up from my computer screen from time to time watching my 13 year-old working out some math problems. This may not sound exciting or glamorous to some. Yet, it is the simple rhythm of our days, and spending time together that makes me so incredibly grateful for this small, yet valuable life we’ve been able to create.

What are you grateful for today?

THANK YOU & FAREWELL TO 2014

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Oh so much to share. So, so much…all lovely, and truth {FULL} and heart inspired.

2014 has been so magical. Quite introspective to say the least. This year brought a new city that I’m so smitten with, and new adventures in education for my boy who is my heart and inspiration. It has led me back down a path I began almost 20 years ago and I’m only now feeling brave enough and ready enough to move towards. I feel so securely this is my right time. More on that another time.

The incredible privilege of caring for my family kept me close to home. And now I have re-kindled a love affair with my creativity, my “service” to the world, my soul’s purpose. Through a deeper yoga and mediation practice I have gained a clarity like I’ve never known. It’s always been there, just stuck underneath doubts and fears.

It’s now time to breathe, create space, EXPAND in all directions and come out of my safe little nest.

“I cultivate trust in my body, in my intuition, and in the flow of my life.”-Elena Brower

With so much love & gratitude I say farewell to 2014 and I welcome with much joy 2015!

 

Simply Thought {FULL}

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As the holidays quickly approach I’m always somewhat conflicted. It seems like the holidays have shifted from a time of family and friends and remembering the true meaning (whatever that means for you) to a time of consumerism, rushing around, feeling frazzled because you haven’t gotten all the holiday cards out to everyone, and stressing about how little time is left to shop for all the folks on your list. It can be a little maddening if you let it. Honestly, how we approach the holidays and our feelings surrounding the holidays is really how we choose to approach it.

I choose to see this time of year as a time to LOVE BIG, SPREAD JOY and to give in the spirit of LOVE.

How about you?

Happy Holidays!

SIMPLE, PRETTY THINGS: VINTAGE INSPIRED SCIENCE POSTERS

PicMonkey Collage3My little mr. and I have been spending a lot of time looking for cool science projects. I can’t say I ever loved Science as a child. However, now that I spend a lot of time researching learning projects Science is quickly becoming a favorite around here!

I spend more time these days on learning sites than I do on shopping sites,  however this morning I indulged myself with a few minutes of window shopping on Etsy and came across these beauties!

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I love the story of how these prints came to be. Here is a description from the Maker:

“We moved into a cabin in the mountains the beginning of January/ 2013. The cabin we moved into has beautiful wood lining the ceilings, beams, and throughout the house. I’ve found my home decor style evolving into something a little more rustic, and natural. Lately I have been crushing on Science themed accessories and was immediately drawn to glass beakers and educational science charts. I was excited to think that I could create my own art, pulling inspiration from pages out of vintage text books, and old school charts. I digitally illustrate each one of these posters, and I use watercolor techniques to acquire a look reminiscent of an older time in our history. I’ve been digitally creating and printing my artwork for years, but I found that selecting, cutting and staining the wood for these posters, is a process I have really enjoyed.”

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I’m coveting the antlers and feathers posters. I’m not even sure what I’m hesitating about. I mean, it would all be in the name of science now…wouldn’t it. ;)

 

Life Lately…Homeschooling

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So maybe this top picture doesn’t really have to do with Homeschooling exactly. However, it’s so sweet that I couldn’t resist. In fact, in a way the above picture does have to do with Homeschooling but I will get to that in a minute.

We started our homeschooling adventure on August 18th. Although our Home Learning doesn’t really look like what you would see going on in a traditional school building day in and day out, we decided to go along with the school calendar for no other reason than it just seemed a good a day as any to begin.

Making our DIY worm compost bin.

Making our DIY worm compost bin.

So truth be told as much as I was excited about Ty learning outside of a traditional school, I was also nervous. Could I do this? Would we be able to spend SO much time together and not go nuts? Is the path of learning we are taking enough to prepare him for his future? And the questions went on. 

Super focused little boy

Super focused little boy

We are now in our fourth week and all I can say was that I wish I had been brave enough and confident enough to have began this venture years ago. We are taking a more self-directed, interest led approach to learning so our days never really look the same. In fact, the learning often may not even take place at home. Some folks may even question if what we are doing really is “learning”. Because I grew up in the traditional school system and I have been “programmed” to believe that our educational system is the only right way, I occasionally have to step back from time to time and trust that what we are doing is best for our child and our family. Some of my initial hesitation stemmed from my fear of being a good “teacher” to Ty. Once we began I quickly saw my role in our learning adventure change from teacher to more of a facilitator. This quote from Albert Einstein sums up my feelings perfectly:

“I never teach my pupils; I only attempt to provide the conditions in which they can learn.”-Albert Einstein

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Constructing a planter box for our community garden

My goal is not to fill my child with facts so he can do well on some test. My hope is to raise a seeker, a problem solver, a curious, passionate child who not only loves to learn but knows how to learn. I want to give him the gift of time. Time to seek out his interests and time to figure out what he’s really good at and where his talents lie. I don’t want him to sit in a class room being fed knowledge that he is likely to forget if it has no meaning in his life.

Do I believe there will be gaps in his knowledge? Sure. But learning how to learn is much better than memorizing facts for the sake of a test. If he knows how to learn, no gap is permanent.

Gekko hunting.

Gekko hunting.

And so what does the picture at the very beginning of this post have to do with homeschooling?  One of the biggest joys for me these days is knowing that we get to spend time so much time together as a family doing the things we love. Honestly, I have been surprised at how easy the adjustment has been for us considering my big Mr. works from home as well. Did I also mention we live in a 1000 sq. ft. house?

Childhood is short and I’m so glad that my little mr. has this time in his life to learn and live in a way that feels right for him, for all of us.  A snuggle with his pup in the middle of the day is just another one of the perks!